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Unlikely OT victory in Charlotte puts a smile on Towns' face

The Wolves went back to work on Monday, less than 48 hours after Saturday's unlikely 125-120 overtime comeback victory at Charlotte.

And they did so with a lightness that was palpable after they won a game in the same manner they have lost so many times.

This time, they won a game they probably had no business winning.

"I couldn't tell you how great a day yesterday was and the night before," Wolves young star Karl-Anthony Towns said after practice. "I haven't smiled like that and felt that good in a while. Yesterday was an amazing day. I haven't had a day like that. A lot of smiles, happy."

Towns had a 47-point, 18-rebound game in Wednesday's home loss and felt none of the rush we felt after his team came back, made three three-pointers in the final minute of regulation time to erase a seven-point deficit before they won in overtime.

The victory ended a four-game losing streak and gave the Wolves a 6-14 record at the quarter-pole mark of the season.

"I was talking to somebody and I think it was my dad and he was just happy to see a win for my sanity," Towns said. "I take this game very serious. I love what I do. Every day I lace up my shoes, I'm so honored and blessed to play this game. You want to win. You're a competitor. The way we're losing, not getting blown out but making mental errors late in the game, it hurt us. It hurts me, especially. To have a win like that, I'm finally able to smile, laugh a lot more and have my spirits up."

The Wolves practiced today in preparation for Tuesday's game against San Antonio at Target Center.

It's their first game against the Spurs since Tim Duncan retired after last season.

One final tidbit:

* NBA TV analyst -- and former Timberwolf, for the briefest of times -- Dennis Scott was at practice Monday, conducting interviews.

Finally there is joy in the Wolves postgame locker room

It was nice seeing the Timberwolves players having a little fun after a game for a change. Tonight they were giddy after the comeback, overtime win over the Hornets. After being so cool under pressure, Zach LaVine and Gorgui Dieng were throwing ice cubes at one another. Describing what was like to watch Andrew Wiggins hit that long three to send the game into overtime, LaVine referred to him as “that curly-haired sucker.’’

Outside the locker room, coach Tom Thibodeau was throwing a bit of ice around too, at least figuratively.

And correctly. Thibodeau went to great lengths not to get too high after this win, even though it ended a four-game losing streak.

“Obviously we’re pleased we won,’’ he said. “But we’ll gather tomorrow, have a day of recovery, and get back to work.’’

Here are some final thoughts on tonight’s game:

--Once again the Wolves bench was good. Both Shabazz Muhammad and Nemanja Bjelica scored 12 off the bench, Cole Aldrige had four points and eight rebounds and Kris Dunn was again efficient, with eight points and six assists in 16-plus minutes. The bench got the team going after a slow start, and against to start the fourth quarter with the team down 10.

--It looks like Wiggins might be getting his swagger back. He had 29 tonight, hit on 11 of 20 shots and two of seven three-pointers. He also had three steals.

--It was a very up and down game for Karl-Anthony Towns. But he sure was good late. He had eight points, two rebounds and an assist in the overtime.

--Ditto for Zach LaVine. He had 12 points after the third quarter:  10 in the fourth quarter and two in overtime.

--The Wolves had a season-high 32 assists tonight, proof that the players kept moving the ball, even when they were down.it was a season high

TV Listings

Local Schedule

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  • NJIT at Gophers men's basketball

    7 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • San Antonio at Timberwolves

    7 pm on FSN, NBATV, 830-AM

  • Gophers women's basketball at New Mexico

    8 pm on 88.5-FM

  • Wild at Toronto

    6:30 pm on FSN, 100.3-FM

  • Timberwolves at Toronto

    6 pm on TNT, 830-AM

  • Army at Gophers women's basketball

    8 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • Gophers men's hockey at Michigan State

    5:30 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • Gophers women's hockey at Boston U.

    6 pm

  • Edmonton at Wild

    7 pm on FSN, 100.3-FM

  • Detroit at Timberwolves

    7 pm on FSN PLUS, 830-AM

  • Georgia Southern at Gophers men's basketball

    8 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • Gophers women's hockey at Boston U.

    2 pm

  • Gophers men's hockey at Michigan State

    7 pm on BTN, 1500-AM

  • Vikings at Jacksonville

    12 pm on Ch. 9, 100.3/1130

  • Gophers women's basketball at South Carolina

    2 pm on SECN, 88.5-FM

  • Northern Illinois at Gophers men's basketball

    4 pm on 1500-AM

  • St. Louis at Wild

    5 pm on FSN PLUS, 100.3-FM

  • Golden State at Timberwolves

    6 pm on FSN, 830-AM

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